Relative sizes

Kuiper Belt Object

2005 FY9

September 2005

Relative orbits

This page created 14 September 2005

The image below and to the left is a CCD image of the recently announced Kuiper Belt Object (KBO) 2005 FY9 taken on September 3rd at Fremont Peak State Park in Northern California. The image consists of four 30 second exposures that have been stacked using the AIP4WIN software. A Meade LX200 F/6.3 SCT coupled with an SBIG ST-9XE camera were used to take the shots. 2005 FY9 is indicated with the red arrow. The circle is where the software says the object ought to have been at the time the image was taken. The green circles and text simply indicate which stars I used as reference in determining the exact location of the target object. In addition, comparison with an online image (shown on the right) shows no object at that point, even though it registers stars fainter than my image. 2005 FY9 is roughly magnitude 17.0, but these shots were taken when the object was low in the sky, so there is substantial attenuation due to the atmosphere. The online image is rotated roughly 60 degrees CCW relative to the left image; I have added two of the reference points in green to help orient the two.

In case you're wondering, I took four 30 second exposures rather than one 2 minute exposure because my telescope was mounted on an alt-azmith mount. This means that I get field rotation for even relatively short exposure times, and more important I can't engage the periodic error correction mode on the scope drive (the later models supposedly do have this feature available in alt-az mode). I also haven't been able to get the ST9-XE to self guide - and I haven't had time to play with it yet.

By clicking on the two images bracketing the web page title above give you can get an idea of both the size of 2005 FY9 relative to other recently discovered solar system objects (photo from Sky and Telecope), and their orbits. For further information peruse the web pages of the group that discovered 2005 FY9:

September 3 CCD image of 2005 FY9
Internet image of 2005 FY9

My mail address:
Back to Allen's Personal Pictures Page